After hearing so much about it, you have decided to try HomePod mini too, the smart speaker from Apple through which you can not only listen to music, but also take advantage of the virtual assistant Siri to perform this or that operation with your voice. .
However, if you are here now and are reading these lines, it seems clear to me that you still do not have very clear ideas about the device in question. How do you say? That’s right and, therefore, would you like to know if I can show you how HomePod mini works ? Of course yes, do not worry. In fact, I’ll tell you more … you happen to be on this guide!
In the following lines, in fact, you will find explained, in a simple and at the same time detailed way, as usual, what exactly HomePod mini is, how to configure it and how to use it. In short, in the end you should have perfectly clear ideas. Then? How about putting the gossip aside and finally getting to the heart of the post? Yup? Great! The chatter is banned and let’s proceed, then. Happy reading and good luck for everything.
- HomePod mini: what it is
- HomPod mini: price
- How HomePod mini works
- Preliminary operations
- In case of doubts or problems
HomePod mini: what it is
Before explaining how HomePod mini works , it seems only right to tell you what exactly is the “contraption” object of this tutorial.
As anticipated at the beginning, it is a smart speaker produced by Apple, through which it is possible not only to play multimedia contents, such as single songs, entire albums and playlists from Apple Music , but also to control your smart home via HomeKit ( for which it also acts as a hub) and take advantage of the integrated voice assistant Siri to obtain information and execute commands. To be clear, it is a rival of the Amazon Echo speakers with Alexa and those of Google Nest (formerly Google Home) with Google Assistant .
As for the HomePod mini released in Italy , the device is officially available for purchase in the “Bel Paese” from November 23, 2021. It should be noted that it is the younger brother of HomePod, a larger smart speaker launched by Apple in 2018, never arrived on the Italian market and currently discontinued.
HomePod mini is quite compact in size : it measures 84.3mm in height, 97.9mm in width and weighs 345 grams. It is spherical in shape and is made of a synthetic woven fabric that culminates in a white glass backlit panel, on which touch controls are available and which lights up when Siri use is called up and while content is playing.
Under the hood, as they say, there is a full range driver, two passive radiators and four microphones, able to guarantee a rather powerful sound, as well as 360 ° enveloping. Orchestrating it all is Apple’s S5 chip (the same used on Apple Watch Series 5 and Apple Watch SE). On the connectivity front, however, it supports Wi-Fi 802.11n, direct access for guests, Bluetooth 5.0 and the Thread home automation protocol.
The compatible audio sources are: Apple Music, music purchased from iTunes music library in iCloud , various music services to third parties, Apple Music Radio or episodes on demand, radio stations TuneIn, Apple Podcast, News in brief, other content you transmit via AirPlay from iPhone, iPad, iPod Touch, Apple TV and Mac.
You can then pair multiple HomePod Minis to create a multi-channel or multi-room audio system. Another useful function to exploit in the home environment is that which allows you to use one or more HomePod Mini as an intercom from one room to another and that which, thanks to the Ultra Wideband chip , allows you to detect nearby Apple devices and transfer audio to or from them by simply bringing them closer.
Other interesting supported features are the one that allows you to take advantage of the Siri shortcuts created on the iPhone and iPad, the reproduction of ambient sounds, the location of other Apple devices via Where is , the ability to send the results of a web search carried out using Siri directly to the iPhone, musical alarms and the ability to recognize the voices of six family members.
Regarding privacy , Apple emphasizes that the voice requests sent to HomePod Mini are not associated with the Apple ID , the communications are encrypted and you can also choose not to save the recordings.
Regarding system requirements and compatibility , to configure and use HomePod mini you need: iPhone SE, iPhone 6s and later or iPod touch (7th generation) updated to iOS 15 or later or iPad Pro, iPad (5th generation and later), iPad Air 2 and later, or iPad mini 4 and later upgraded to iPadOS 15 or later.
HomPod mini: price
But how much does HomePod mini cost? I’ll answer you immediately: the price is not really a “friend” and is higher than that of other smart speakers, or € 99.00 . In the sales package there is also the relative documentation, the power cable and a 20W power supply.
You can buy it directly on the Apple website , in the Apple Store or in the main electronics stores, the “physical” and online ones, choosing from the following colors : space gray, white, blue, yellow and orange.
It is possible to add AppleCare + to the purchase, at the price of 15.00 euros, to obtain two years of technical assistance and coverage for accidental damage.
Note that there are also supports and other accessories that can allow you to optimize the use experience of HomePod mini.
How HomePod mini works
Now, I’d say we can finally take the real action and find out how HomePod mini works . You will find everything explained in detail right below.
If you want to find out how HomePod mini works, you need to do some preliminary steps . Nothing complicated, don’t worry.
First, you have to take the HomePod mini out of its sales package, connect the power cable to it and connect it to the power supply . Then wait a few moments for the device to work: this will be signaled to you by a pulsating white light visible on the top.
Next, you have to grab your iPhone, iPad or iPod Touch and activate Bluetooth connectivity on the device, by accessing the iOS / iPadOS home screen, selecting the Settings icon (the one with the gear wheel ), then the attached Bluetooth item to the new screen displayed and turning ON the appropriate switch.
Also activate the Wi-Fi connection by touching the word Wi-Fi found on the main iOS / iPadOS Settings screen, moving the appropriate switch to ON and, if necessary, selecting the wireless network you want to connect to and typing the password may be required.
At this point, you can move on to the configuration phase of HomePod mini, so that you can then finally take advantage of it.
So, bring your iPhone, iPad or iPod Touch close to HomePod mini, wait for the popup showing the speaker and press the Configure button to start the configuration process, then you have to follow the wizard that is proposed to you on the screen.
If the configuration popup does not appear automatically, select the Home app icon (the one with the yellow house on a white background ) found on the home screen and / or in the iOS / iPadOS App Library, then tap on the button (+) at the top left and select the Add accessory item from the menu that opens.
Next, choose the Other options option that you find on the proposed screen, tap on the HomePod mini icon from the list of nearby accessories that is proposed to you and proceed in the same way as I have indicated above.
What you have to do during the setup phase is indicate the room in which you have chosen to place HomePod mini (eg. Study or Kitchen ), decide whether or not to enable personal requests (when iPhone, iPad or iPod Touch are nearby they can use HomePod mini to access messages, reminders, etc.) and accept the terms and conditions of use .
Then, press the button to transfer the settings from your Apple account and point the camera at your HomePod mini, aligning it in the center of the circle visible on the iPhone, iPad or iPod Touch screen. A subsequent notification sound will confirm that the process was successful, after which Siri will greet you from HomePod mini and you can finally start using the speaker.
Any further configurations can always be made via the Home app. More precisely, by accessing the main screen of the app on iOS / iPadOS and selecting the Home Settings item you can select your account and choose whether or not to activate voice recognition, if and how to enable the use of Apple Music and whether to control access remotely. You can also enable the use of HomePod mini as an intercom and manage the software update.
You can configure HomePod mini through the Home application as well from Mac. To do this, select the Home application icon that you find in the macOS Launchpad , which you can access by clicking on the button with the colored squares located on the Dock bar , click on the ‘icon of the house located at the top left, then on the item Home settings from the menu that opens and proceed in the same way as I explained to you just now for iPhone and iPad.
Once you have set up the HomePod mini, using it is child’s play. You can use it by voice control, by touch controls or by operating from iPhone, iPad, iPod Touch, Mac or Apple TV.
As for voice control , just say the fateful phrase “Hey Siri” to call Siri, followed by the request of your interest and wait for HomePod mini to respond or execute the command directly. The fact that the voice assistant has taken action will be signaled to you by the kaleidoscopic lighting on the top of the HomePod mini.
Instead, as far as touch controls are concerned , you can manage playback by tapping the top of HomePod mini as follows:
- Touch– allows you to start playback and pause it.
- Double tap– allows you to go to the next track.
- Triple tap– allows you to go to the previous track.
- Pressand hold – allows you to call up Siri.
- Press and hold(+) – turns up the volume.
- Press and hold(-) – allows you to lower the volume.
Regarding the opportunity to manage HomePod from another device , you can transfer the playback of multimedia contents from the HomePod mini to iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch and vice versa simply by bringing the devices together and pressing on the warning that appears at the top of the display.
If you are not in the vicinity of HomePod mini, you can still transfer playback from iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch using AirPlay , by pressing the appropriate icon (the one with the triangle and the waves ) visible in the playback app in use or by recalling the iOS / iPadOS Control Center , swiping from the top right corner downwards on iPhone with Face ID and iPad and from bottom to top on all other iPhone and iPod Touch models, selecting the AirPlay icon located in the box at the top right and by touching the name of HomePod mini from the Speakers and TV list that appears.
The same thing can be done by macOS. You can transfer content playback from Mac to HomePod mini by selecting the AirPlay icon visible in the application window you are using or by calling the Control Center , by clicking on the icon with the two cursors located at the top of right of the screen, selecting the Sound box from the menu that appears, then the name of HomePod mini from the Output list .
In addition to how I just explained to you, you can manage playback on your HomePod mini through the Home app . To do this, go to the application screen related to the room where HomePod mini is located, then if you are using iOS / iPadOS make a long press on the device icon , while if you are using macOS right click on the HomePod mini icon and choose the Show Controls item from the menu that appears. Then use the playback controls that are offered to you in the new screen, from which you can also manage alarms and timers.
Instead, by making a long press on the HomePod mini icon on iOS / iPadOS or by right-clicking on its icon and choosing the Settings item from the menu that appears on macOS and, subsequently, by pressing on the gear symbol you can adjust the settings related to the use of Siri, to location, to accessibility, you can configure the use of HomePod as stereo pair ste etc.
If you have an Apple TV 4K and it’s in the same room as the HomePod mini, you can set the HomePod mini as the audio output for your set top box. To do this, always access the Home application screen relating to the reference room , press and hold the Apple TV icon if you are using iOS / iPadOS or right-click on it and choose the Settings item from the menu that appears if you are using macOS, then select the gear symbol , then the Default Audio Output option and select the HomePod mini name .
In case of doubts or problems
Have you followed my instructions on how HomePod mini works, but is there still something that is still not very clear to you or have you run into problems? Given the circumstances, the best suggestion I can offer you is definitely to consult the section of the Apple site dedicated to HomePod support .
If, on the other hand, you feel it is necessary to get in direct contact with Apple ‘s assistance , I inform you that you can do it in various ways, namely: by phone, via chat, by going to the Apple Store in person, etc. For more details, see my tutorial dedicated specifically to how to contact Apple .